Learning Supertubos, Super Tubes – Super Heavy

Master Kelly Slater - In The Barrel, Sunset Rip Curl Pro 2011, Supertubos, Portugal

Master Kelly Slater – In The Barrel, Sunset Rip Curl Pro 2011, Supertubos, Portugal

Supertubos surf spot, between Conscolescao and Peniche in Portugal is the most amazing wave i have met in person, so far. It’s a short break wave, that break heavy and super fast onto a very shallow water on a sandy bottom shore. It’s a steep, fast, tube making and super awesome wave . . . Supertubos.

Ever since we were on a Rip Curl PRO Portugal, ASF World Tour event in October 2011 and saw the wave experts take on those 4-5 meter monsters, I is my wish  to surf it too. Much smaller swell tough 😉

Supertubos is a world known wave and there is a lot of locals surfing it on a good wave day. A lot of really skilled surfers and bodyboarders in the water on such days. Definitely not the time for a first-time Supertubos master-in-training to be at that place.

So, we decided with my friend, a very skilled body boarder,  Diego, that on every early morning when the Supertubos will be working, we will wake up early and beat the pro crowd, to be be able to learn the wave.

Supertubos Portugal, Brazilian Friend Diego

Supertubos Portugal, Brazilian Friend Diego

We’ve got our first chance on a Saturday June 2nd, 2012. The forecast for that day was 2.5 to 3 meter swell with crosss-offshhore winds. Perfect conditions for Supertubos. We woke up at 6 am and drove to the Supertubos, which is located  about 5 minutes from our surf house Tribu.

At 6:30 a, as I was entering the massive breaking waves, I saw Diego, already riding his first super tube of the day. Just an great morning sight, to see your friend in the Barrel fro the side. It was just great motivation to make 2 epic, late duck dives to get to the line up. A plus side of this surf spot is, that you are able to get to the line-up really fast.  Only one or two duck dives. But these duck dives, phuuuu!! When you make it the lip smashes on your feet, launching you through the other side of the breaking wave.

Supertubos, Small Tube Body Board, Diego

Supertubos, Small Tube Body Board, Diego

I was very brave to take on the first wave, as it seemed so easy when Diego was doing it. I paddle on the wave, want to make a stand-up and the next moment I was falling, smashed the bottom and find myself almost on the shore. Auch. I waited for the set to pass and get to line up again. This time I was afraid. I was just floating in the line-up watching some 6 really good surfer taking on the waves. It was cool vibe in the line-up. We all respected each other, a real surfing spirit on that morning.

I took on the second wave, same story and the third one as well. But at my first try I really got smashed hard with my ass to the sandy bottom. I was really thinking about exiting the water. “But, man! You woke up at 6 am, put on the wetsuit and you are in the water. There is tubes like 5 meters away from you. What kind of a man is giving up after only 3 wipe-outs.” Just turn around and go again. This time I didn’t hesitate. I took the first wave that offered it self. I paddled hard and made a stand up!! WOoooooooo, I’m surfing on Supertubos!!

BUT! The nose of the board started sinking, maybe the wave was too steep for the board, as I was unable to get the nose over water, and the next moment I was falling to the sandy bottom again. This time hitting it directly with my back. I swear, it was like one giant’s hand smashing and pressing you to the bottom. It didn’t hurt at all at that moment, but sure did feel the pain the whole week after.

Cody Mawerick vs. Tank Evans - Tube Fail

Cody Mawerick vs. Tank Evans – Tube Fail

I kind of felt like this penguin guy, Cody Maverick from the surfing cartoon Surf’s Up. And my friends told me, that my Supertubos surfing looked like this 😉

I was totally stoked, and also covered in sticky sand under my wetsuit when we got back to the van. I was telling to my friends, how happy I am, that after 4 heavy wipe outs the board is still in one piece. I put the board in the board bag and put behind the van.We were having fun talking about waves, changed our clothes  and drive the van forward from the parking, to return to the  Tribu Surf House with Diego and Marina. On our way,  a car started driving behind us, blending lights and honking the horn. Diego thought that there is something wrong with the tires of the van. But everything was fine, we just thought one happy camper is still in action from Friday night.  Than he drove parallel to us, pointing to a surfboard he has in his car. I showed him thumbs up, thinking: “Ye, cool guy, you have s surfboard to.” And than . . . I look back, and my surfboard is missing in the van. OMFG!!! The guy has my surfboard.

Feel The Wave

Feel The Wave

We stopped on one side road and this guy Mark from South Africa (we’ve met in the following days on some surf sessions ), saw when we drove off and the board fell on the ground behind the van. I am so thankful that such a nice person saw this event, that he drove after us with my board. What a guy.

So this day was a triple lucky day in the beginning already. I’ve got 4 wipe-outs and was still in one piece. So was the board. And I accidentally re-found my surfboard, thanks to the South African surf Spirit. Thank you Mark.
And thank you . . . God? That I didn’t drive in reverse from the parking. Even Mark wouldn’t been able to help me in the case of driving the van over my board . . .

Later on that day we’ve got 4 more really nice surf sessions on Baleal beach with mini-malibu boards. Was so much fun.

Feel the wave

Feel the wave

And soon, I will take the teachings of the Supertubos wave, with added experience, skill and strength to master this monster that has overmastered me on this day.

You can only loose in any situation, when you give up. I don’t know, how really great must it be, to actually be standing on a surfboard, surrounded by nothing but a tunnel of ocean water and moving along it as it disappears behind you and appears in front of you . .
And no wipe-out, I don’t care how hard and pianful it might be, can ever stop me from getting what I desire in any area of life.

Supertubos, you are no exception.

Tube Sunset

I claim my amazing tube.


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